HOW TO BURST A BLOOD VESSEL
It’s a special Rage Index this month. If you believe the hysteria, the future of Our Great Nation was at stake last Thursday.
Normal news coverage ground to a halt. The mini-tornado that swept through Victoria, the National Apology for forced adoption and the entirety of the rest of the world were swept aside as Australia contemplated its imminent death.
ABC news dedicated both its news broadcast and the 7:30 Report to the death of democracy, relegating the Apology and other insignificant bits and pieces to the last few minutes of their show. The rest of the networks basically followed suit.
Women gathered for the National Apology for victims of forced adoptions. Photo Lukas Koch. AAP.
God knows what would have happened if there actually had been a leadership spill. Perhaps there would have been a full blown re-enactment, with the press gallery popping on costumes and acting out the various ministerial roles and Laurie Oakes narrating.
In the end, all that transpired was that a bunch of self-entitled blokes finally cleared out of the cabinet and left Gillard to get on with the job of running the country instead of baby-sitting their egos.
But don’t let that stop you venting your fury. After all, it wouldn’t be Australia if we weren’t making mountains out of molehills at every available opportunity.
So here’s a step-by-step guide on to how to burst a blood vessel:
Step one: Actually believe that Australia is in such a precarious position that changing the leader of the government will save our lives. For this delusion to hold, you’ll have to conveniently forget that we have one of the strongest economies in the OECD, one of the lowest unemployment rates in the world and we’re not in the middle of a civil war.
However, if you believe the far-right, our economic security is a complete myth and we actually are in a civil war. (Tony Abbott said so, so it must be true.)
Step Two: Believe that Kevin Rudd is the Great White Hope. This will involve forgetting that we pretty much hated him when he was kicked out last time. It would also be useful to deny that if he did become Prime Minister again, we’d pretty soon remember why he annoyed us so much and start demanding that Bill Shorten took over. Then we’d hate Shorten. See a pattern here?
Step Three: Believe that the future of Our Great Nation is so important that everything else should disappear. This will involve being abusive towards those who had the nerve to be upset that the National Apology was overshadowed. The Apology affected 250,000 people and as one person told me: ‘what’s a few women’s feelings compared to the future of our country?’ It’s a good point.
What is the future of our country if we can’t show compassion to those who have spent forty or fifty years living with the appalling cruelty and heartlessness that changed their lives and robbed them of their children? If compassion makes you roll your eyes and want to vomit, then the National Apology was probably going to make you angry whether there was a spill or not.
Step Four: This is a specialty one. It involves being a member of the press gallery. You’ve got a number of ways to be furious here:
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